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June 2021
June 2021
Asia Electronics Industry logo
Asia Electronics Industry
June 2021 Volume 26, Serial No. 297

ASIA ELECTRONICS INDUSTRY (ISSN 1342-422X) is published monthly by Dempa Publications, Inc., 1-11-15 Higashi Gotanda, Shinagawa-ku, Tokyo 141-8715, Japan Tel: +81-3-3445-6111 Fax: +81-3-3445-6890. Editorial e-mail: may@dempa.co.jp; Subscription e-mail: circulationmanila@dempa.co.jp.

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Cover | Story
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axell, Ltd. has expanded the KE-LF Series lead-free galvanic cell-type oxygen sensors compliant with Europe’s Restrictions on Hazardous Substances (RoHS) directive. In Dec. 2020, the company started sample shipments of three models with an oxygen measurement range of 0 to 30 percent: KE-12LF (exterior shape=standard shape) and KE-12F3LF (cylindrical shape, threaded top), which feature high-speed response and life expectancy of three years; and KE-50LF (standard shape), which features low-speed response and life expectancy of 10 years. The company has added a new model with an oxygen measurement range of 0 to 100 percent, and started in April sample shipment of KE-25F3LFM (cylindrical shape, threaded top), which features standard response and has a life expectancy of six years.

Maxell offers a lineup of six models under the KE-LF Series, combining the above-described models with KE-25LF (standard shape) and KE-25F3LF (cylindrical shape, threaded top) with an oxygen measurement range of 0 to 30 percent. They feature standard response and have a life expectancy of six years, and are being supplied for industrial applications, such as oxygen concentration measurement, since Nov. 2019. As environment-friendly products, the KE-LF Series meets a wide range of demand, including oxygen concentration measurement for oxygen lack prevention, food storage, medical care, biotechnology equipment, education, environmental monitoring, and exhaust gas measurement.

AEI News
Partnership Eyes Next-Generation Semiconductors
ITRI and Tokuyama collaboration agreement signing ceremony group photographed
ITRI and Tokuyama held a collaboration agreement signing ceremony to announce the joint development of quality detection technology for semiconductor materials.
TAIWAN and JAPAN – Taiwan’s Industrial Technology Research Institute and semiconductor chemical materials manufacturer Tokuyama Corporation have agreed to jointly develop quality detection technology for semiconductor materials, thereby rapidly screening out impurities and enhance production quality. The partnership aims to create the foundation for the semiconductor industry to produce products with even higher quality and specifications, thus enabling new-generation smart applications.

The semiconductor industry is bracing for miniaturization trend as big-ticket technology trends such as fifth-generation (5G) communications standard, internet of things (IoT), artificial intelligence (AI), advances in automotive electronic markets, among others, are progressing.

ITRI and Tokuyama have started collaborating since 2018 and are embarking on long-term cooperation to launch joint research and development (R&D) of quality inspection technology for semiconductor materials. ITRI’s advanced semiconductor nano-related detection technology in conjunction with Tokuyama’s semiconductor chemical materials technology will pave the way for the development of state-of-the-art measurement technology for the semiconductor industry.

www.itri.org.tw; www.tokuyama.co.jp/eng/

In View | This Month
China’s Domestic Firms to Propel Industrial Robot Market
W

hile the manufacturing industry in China is continuously faced with the challenges of labor saving and automation, the country is set to create a huge industrial market that can be considered largest in the world.

Previously, the sales ratio of overseas manufacturers in China’s industrial market was high, but in recent years, domestic production by Chinese manufacturers has been increasing on back of the promotion of “Made in China 2025”.

Characteristics of China’s Robots Market
According to International Federation of Robotics (IFR), global sales of robots (main bodies) in 2019 decreased 12 percent from the previous year to 373,000 units. By region, sales in China accounted for about 40 percent at 140,500 units; still maintaining a high level despite a decrease of 9 percent from the previous year.

Taiwan Positions to Secure Huge Gains in Electric Mobility
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everaging its competitive advantage in advanced manufacturing of key components, leading semiconductor design and technology, complete and flexible IT supply, and high tech talents, Taiwan positions to grab a chunk of the advanced mobility market. In its serious desire to get ahead of the mobility curb, it presents 2035 eMobility Taiwan, an international exhibition on electric vehicles (EVs) and self-driving car ecosystems.

Future of Transportation
EVs and self-driving cars are considered de facto global transport of the future. The Topology Research Institute has predicted that 80 percent of new cars will be equipped with network technology by 2025, and the number of networked cars will reach 74 million worldwide. Meanwhile, Intel and the SA International Research Institute predict that in 2050, the “passenger economy” for autonomous driving will reach a market potential of US$7 trillion. The Automotive Research & Testing Center (ARTC) also estimates that by 2050, electronic automotive components will account for as much as 50 percent of an entire vehicle.

Special | Report
Smart Factory typography
Smart Factory Evolves Into Fully Automated Factory
Robots and smart, interconnected machines are now the centerpiece of automated and unmanned factories. Leading mounter manufacturers showcase their complete lineup of equipment, powered by integrated software solutions, to cater to automated needs in production.
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he closure of many factories globally amid the spread of the novel coronavirus infection has put to test the Business Continuity Plan (BCP) and effectiveness of the supply chain of the manufacturing industry. The COVID-19 factor, as well as the labor shortage and soaring labor costs, had led to increased interest in production automation using robots and smart machines in fully automated factories and unmanned factories.

Smarter Technologies on Event Floor
At NEPCON CHINA 2021, which was held in Shanghai in April, the latest products and technologies in the surface-mount technology (SMT) from global companies were highlighted. About 700 companies from China, Japan, the United States and countries in Europe displayed their solutions. Many visitors showed interest in offerings related to smart and automated SMT processes from industry leaders, like FUJI Corporation, Yamaha Motor Co., Ltd., JUKI Corporation, and ASM Assembly Systems.

Special | Report
PCB Technologies heading typography
Functional Integration Advances in PCB to Create New Values
A plethora of features emerging from the progress of vehicles has given rise to various kinds of PCB that are designated for a specific system. This trend would drive the development of PCB forward, on top of the advancements in mobile terminals.
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echnological development of printed circuit boards (PCBs) has been gathering steam. Amid the rise in the percentage of electric components incorporated in a vehicle with the progress in advanced driver-assistance systems (ADAS) and autonomous driving technologies, as well as the shift to electric vehicles (EVs), the development of high-performance onboard PCBs with excellent reliability has been intensifying. With PCBs for smartphones, modules and wearable devices, technological development to meet growing needs for finer circuits with the implementation of 5G communications has been progressing.

Onboard PCBs
The technological needs for onboard PCBs vary by category, including information and communication system, safety system, body system, and powertrain system, and PCBs that are designed to best suit respective categories are developed and supplied. In particular, in recent years, in line with the connected, autonomous, shared & services, and electric (CASE) trend, which is the mega trend in the automotive market, manufacturers have been putting strength into new technology development of PCBs for the safety system, such as millimeter wave radars and onboard cameras, and those for power circuits in electrified vehicles (xEVs).

TECH | FOCUS
New IGBT Modules to Innovate Power Conversion in Inverters
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OHM Co. Ltd. has developed four new 600V insulated-gate bipolar transistor (IGBT) Intelligent Power Modules (IPMs). The new BM6437x Series delivers best-in-class low noise characteristics together with low loss ideal for power conversion in inverters.

The devices are used in compact industrial equipment, such as small capacity motors for robots, as well as home appliances, including air conditioners and washing machines.

In recent years, with the growth of IoT applications and increasing power consumption following the automation of industrial equipment and home appliances, there is a need for lower power consumption when considering power utilization and limited global resources. This requires higher efficiency IGBTs, one of the semiconductors responsible for power conversion, along with IGBT-integrated modules to further reduce power consumption.

TECH | FOCUS
Flexible Coil Antenna Suits Contactless Power Supply
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ippon Mektron, Ltd. has developed an ultra-thin stretchable coil antenna that supports contactless power supply with the backing of Strategic Information and Communications R&D Promotion Program (SCOPE) of Japan’s Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications. Because it is based on the flexible printed circuits (FPC) with stretchability developed by the company, it can be attached to joints such as wrists and can function as an antenna for near field communication (NFC) even when being bent.

Features, Function
This coil antenna is based on the technology of the stretchable FPC mass produced by the company and the thickness of the elastic material layer has been reduced from 50 to 10μm, which is 1/5 of the conventional thickness. By developing a reinforced structure and maintaining both softness and shape of the product, it can follow wrinkles, realizing natural body fitness.

In addition to the conventional connector connection, a small conductive snap button is incorporated, enabling easy and reliable connection of the coil antenna to an external device (Photos 1 and 2).

MOBILITY
Charging Network to Propel Electric Mobility in Southeast Asia
The partnership of Porsche and Shell will pave the way to a more prevalent involvement of the private sector for alternative mobility solutions that are not just technologically advanced but also environmentally sustainable.
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orsche Asia Pacific Pte Ltd and Royal Dutch Shell will implement Southeast Asia’s first cross-border high-performance charging network with 12 charge points at six Shell stations strategically located along Malaysia’s North-South highway, offering electric vehicle (EV) drivers the possibility of convenient travel between Singapore and Kuala Lumpur and Penang in Malaysia in the future.

The partnership further demonstrates the commitment of Porsche and Shell to drive the future of electric mobility in Southeast Asia. “The (Southeast Asian) markets hold strong potential for Porsche to unlock and we see an opportunity to shape electric mobility in the region. Our high-performance charging network across Singapore and Malaysia will serve as a lighthouse project for other countries to follow,” says Matthias Becker, Vice President, Region Overseas and Emerging Markets at Porsche.

The project is the first cross border charging network in Asia
The project is the first cross border charging network in Asia.
MOBILITY
Future Mobility Aims at Energy-Efficient, Low-Speed EVs
The shift to mobility takes into account total energy efficiency of vehicles including how their electricity is sourced. Teijin and Applied EV collaboration will zero in on this endeavor.
T

eijin Limited and Applied Electric Vehicles (Applied EV) have developed a highly energy-efficient low-speed electric vehicle (LS-EV) prototype for autonomous driving systems and other mobility applications that are expected to help realize zero-emission mobility.

The four-seat LS-EV embodies a Well-to-Wheel Zero-Emission approach that combines Teijin’s proprietary technologies and expertise in strong, lightweight materials, processing and molding technologies and Applied EV’s technologies including an entirely new mobility vehicle platform called Blanc Robot, built entirely from first principles, integrating a new, high efficiency driveline and full “drive-by-wire” technologies.

The vehicle, which is built on the Blanc Robot zero-emission robotic vehicle platform developed by Applied EV, incorporates Teijin materials and technical know-how. It runs on remarkably little energy, achieving unprecedented energy efficiency for an autonomous vehicle, consuming roughly the same amount of energy as a human pedestrian. It can also be used for autonomous driving systems.

MOBILITY
Common-Mode Chokes Suit Automotive Demands
The new miniaturized common-mode chokes for automotive of TDK implement great signal mode transfer characteristics at compact and low profile.
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DK Corporation has developed its new ACT1210D Series common-mode choke for automotive controller area network-flexible data rate (CAN-FD), which the company began mass producing last April.

Automotive local area networks are roughly categorized into four systems such as body, safety, powertrain and multimedia/information and telecommunications. This product supporting CAN and CAN-FD enables a fivefold data transmission speed of 5Mbps. At present, CAN is the most widely used standard for body and other systems, keeping a maximum data transmission speed of 1Mbps.

MOBILITY
New Sensor Technology Zeros in on Automotive
Alps Alpine and Acconeer will combine their respective strengths in analog design for wide-angle sensing and antenna and millimeter-wave design to yield next-generation sensing technology.
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cconeer AB and Alps Alpine Co., Ltd. have agreed to jointly develop next generation patented Pulse Coherent sensors, targeting a wide range of applications in the automotive, industrial, and consumer segments including mobile phones.

The agreement is based on the understanding made by the two companies in April 2020 that Alps Alpine will receive exclusivity for the new product for the automotive market. The product that will be produced out of the joint development effort is planned to be ready for production in 2024.

The indispensable trend in the automotive industry is dramatically reshaping the set of technologies applied to automobiles. Sensing technology using cameras, light detection and ranging (LiDAR) and millimeter waves are considered the eyes of autonomous driving. It is also a core technology for diverse monitoring of driver status and other conditions inside the cabin, contributing to safer, more comfortable mobility for vehicle occupants.

Servo Controller, Driver Module Significantly Cuts Power Loss
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RINAMIC Motion Control GmbH & Co. KG, which is now part of Maxim Integrated Products, Inc. has introduced the smallest and lowest-power single-axis servo controller/driver module with integrated motion control. The new TMCM-1321 servo controller/driver module enables two-phase bipolar stepper motors in robotics and automation equipment to optimize speed and synchronization of axes for quicker throughput while also reducing power loss by 75 percent. It features an on-board magnetic encoder and digital inputs for an optical encoder to simplify servo control for advanced feedback and diagnostics, and is more than three times smaller when compared with similar stepper motor solutions.

SMTs | IN REVIEW
Rapid Inspection System for Micro-LED Boosts Product Yield
The system uses a photoluminescence measurement technique to enable 100 percent inspection, which is not possible with electroluminescence inspection.
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amamatsu Photonics has developed MiNY PL, a system for high-speed inspection of micro-LEDs on wafers to detect abnormalities in their external appearance, intensity and wavelength of light emissions. This inspection system uses a photoluminescence (PL) measurement technique based on the company’s advanced image processing technology and a newly developed imaging module with its unique optical design technology. The MiNY PL micro-LED PL inspection system features the type number C15740-01.

MiNY PL makes fast pass/fail decisions when inspecting micro-LEDs, which will contribute to an increased product yield for use in display applications and will also help to increase the research and development (R&D) efficiency of micro-LEDs. MiNY PL will also streamline the 100 percent inspection process of micro-LEDs in future mass production lines.

Product image for the MiNY PL inspection system for micro-LEDs
MiNY PL inspection system for micro-LEDs
PL measurement technique is a versatile method for evaluating characteristics of LED and other devices by capturing and analyzing light-excited photoluminescence images in a non-contact and non-invasive manner.
SMTs | IN REVIEW
JUKI Cultivates Non-Mounter, Non-SMT Areas
To prosper its venture into this area, the company has developed a hybrid automated optical inspection system in partnership with XTIA Ltd.
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UKI Corporation has been developing new markets in the non-mounter, non-surface mount technology (SMT) areas, including printed circuit board (PCB) inspection systems and automated warehouses, in order to expand its industrial equipment business centering around mounters. As part of efforts, JUKI has developed a hybrid automated optical inspection (AOI) system jointly with XTIA Ltd. in Tokyo.

In its industrial systems business, JUKI offers through a partner a full lineup of equipment employed in an SMT line, including automated guided vehicles (AGVs) through a partnership. This is being offered on top of its own products, including mounters, solder paste printers, PCB inspection systems, and automated warehouses. JUKI connects these machines to JaNets software, an integrated system promoting JUKI Smart Solution that achieves SMT lines with high-efficiency production in the global market.

At the same time, JUKI also focuses on the promotion of automation and labor saving through the use of multitask platform, and on the expansion of solutions in the non-mounter, and non-SMT areas, such as automated warehouses, as well as inspection systems.

JUKI's newly developed hybrid AOI system
JUKI has developed a hybrid AOI system jointly with XTIA, Ltd.
SMTs | IN REVIEW
FUJI Expands Compact Multi-Joint Robot Business
Along this area, the company has developed and released the SW-BA assembly robot cell, which automates manual work in the panel assembly process.
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UJI Corporation has developed, commercialized and started accepting orders for SmartWing panel assembly robot cell SW-BA as an advanced robot cell series of its compact multijoint robot SmartWing. This endeavor is part of efforts to expand its robot business. SW-BA automates the manual work in the panel assembly process.

FUJI pitches its mounter business as a robot solution business, and has been applying this as a strategy to meet a wide range of needs in smart factories by turning mounters into a platform.

Designed for Automation of Panel Assembly
SmartWing has a payload of 2kg and is suitable for automation of works, such as arranging nuts and washers, tightening screws, arranging screws, packing, sorting loose supplied workpieces, sorting workpieces, and inserting tubes. FUJI offers SmartWing to diverse industries, including electronic devices industry, as a robot that can be used immediately upon installation, leveraging the robot’s feature without the need for instruction.
SW-BA panel assembly robot
The SW-BA panel assembly robot cell automates the panel assembly process.
Major Chip Companies Infuse Heavy Capital Investments
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eading semiconductor manufacturers have been stepping up investments to bolster their production capacities. A case in point is Intel Corporation’s announcement in March of its plan to invest US$20 billion to build a new plant in Arizona in the United States. This was followed by the announcement by Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company Limited (TSMC) of its plan to invest US$100 billion in the next three years.

Rapid advancement in digitization amid the expansion of novel coronavirus (COVID-19) infections has led to dramatic increase in demand for semiconductors for use in personal computers, data centers, and smartphones since last year. Meanwhile, the automotive market, which was severely affected by the COVID-19 pandemic in the first half of 2020, recovered quicker than expected, contributing to the tight supply and demand situation. Automakers have been forced to reduce production. According to some estimates, sales of more than US$60 billion will be lost in 2021 due to shortage of semiconductors.

Test | Measurement
Anritsu Releases Network Visualization Software
The PureFlow Profiler can show the state of communication networks to check the cause of traffic and resolve the bottleneck.
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nritsu Corporation has released PureFlow Profiler (Monitoring Manager 3) software that can grasp the communication state of networks. Amid the increasing network traffic in companies, PureFlow Profiler can respond to the challenge of maintaining communication quality as a network visualization tool. It is being distributed by SCSK Corporation.

Visualization Tool
PureFlow Profiler is connected with the PureFlow Series band control unit in the network. The interval delay between the two PureFlow tools is measured and displayed as a composite figure. It can be used to distinguish a bottleneck and the place where a fault is generated in the network.
PureFlow Profiler
PureFlow Profiler enables visualization of networks.
Test | Measurement
Current Sensor Element Makes Efficient Power Measurement
Using Yokogawa’s new 760903 current sensor element to the WT5000 precision power analyzer also enables evaluation of power use efficiency during product design.
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okogawa Test & Measurement Corporation has developed the 760903 current sensor element for use with the company’s world-class power measurement solution, the WT5000 precision power analyzer. The 760903 current sensor element includes a number of new features that simplify the setup and use of external current sensors.

With the release of this new product, Yokogawa will continue to expand its business in the power measurement field by proposing solutions to customers that improve performance and enable the efficient development and evaluation of electric vehicles (EVs) and renewable energy-related equipment. In so doing, the company is doing its part to aid in the realization of a sustainable society.

WT500 precision power analyzer
WT500 precision power analyzer
High-End Manufacturing Technologies Display at ITES 2021
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roviding an effective platform for professional industrial communication for the upstream and downstream manufacturing industries, Shenzhen International Industrial Manufacturing Technology and Equipment Exhibition (ITES 2021) was held recently at the Shenzhen World Exhibition & Convention Center.

With 240,000sq.m show area, ITES 2021 gathered over 2,111 overseas and domestic industrial manufacturers and suppliers from 21 countries and regions. They showcased high-end products and technology in the manufacturing industry, covering various machine tools, cutting tools, measuring tools, robotics, electronic manufacturing equipment, and a wide range of precision components. The four-day exhibition attracted 140,765 professional visitors to participate.

Attracts New Exhibitors
This year’s event featured five theme exhibitions: metal cutting machine tools, metal forming machine tools, robotics and automation equipment, industrial supply, and electronics intelligent manufacturing.

TECHNOLOGY | HIGHLIGHT
Diamond Flattening Offers Better Alternative to Polishing
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research group at the NanoMaterials Research Institute in Kanazawa University has developed a mechanical damage-free flattening technology for diamonds as an alternative to polishing. This was accomplished in collaboration with Diamond and Carbon Applications GmbH of Germany.

Further energy savings of semiconductor devices is required to realize carbon neutrality, and the development of next-generation wide bandgap semiconductors is highly expected. In particular, the diamond has especially high dielectric breakdown electric field, high carrier mobility, excellent thermal conductivity, and long retention time of quantum information and is expected as the ultimate material for semiconductor devices. However, issues related to the manufacturing cost and manufacturing process of the diamond wafer, which is the basis of the device, remain as serious obstacles to the application of diamond semiconductors.

Diagram depicting the mechanism used in the diamond wafer flattening technology
Figure 1: Mechanism of the diamond wafer flattening technology developed in the present research
TECHNOLOGY | HIGHLIGHT
Research Makes Use of Sweat to Power Wearables
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research group at the Faculty of Science and Technology of Tokyo University of Science has developed a wearable biofuel cell array that produces high output power from lactic acid in sweat by screen-printing carbon electrodes on traditional Japanese paper coated with water repellent. The research group expects it to be used in the fields of medicine, sports, and training management.

University of Tsukuba, RIKEN, and Yamagata University also took part in the research.

Current wearable devices are faced with the challenges related to the development of wearable batteries, which are safe, have longer lifecycle, and have sufficient output. Thus, the group has been conducting research and development, focusing on biofuel cells that can generate electricity using substances such as glucose (sugar) as fuel.

PRODUCT | HIGHLIGHT
Synchronous Rectification Controller Lifts Efficiency, Safety
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he MM3878 secondary-side synchronous rectification control IC for AC/DC power supply from Mitsumi Electric Co. Ltd. achieves both high efficiency and safety through its own control system supporting the continuous current mode.

The new product is mainly used as an AC adapter with a wide output voltage range, such as USB power delivery (PD) and quick charge, a single output AC adapter, built-in power supplies for TVs, monitors, printers, among others, and whole AC/DC power supplies of the flyback type.

Energy-efficient equipment is now highly demanded, and efficiency regulations have been tightened for power supplies, such as AC adapters, causing the increase in the use of a secondary-side synchronous rectifier circuit for the power supply.

IN THE KNOW | LED Technology
Part 1
Rich LED Technologies Exhibit Versatility in Application
This is Part 1 of a two-part article series on light emitting diodes (LEDs). Part 1 features the structure and operation principle of LEDs, semiconductor materials and emission wavelengths, and efficiency of LEDs. It also discusses application fields over the years.
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n 1907, a phenomenon in which solid substance emits light when current flows through it was reported, and light-emitting diodes (LEDs) have been put to practical use for display application.

In 1993, blue LEDs were developed, putting in place red, green and blue LED light sources, which are the three primary colors of light.

In 1996, white LEDs consisting of blue LED and yellow phosphor were announced. From there, various improvements have been added and applications have expanded to encompass energy-saving illumination light sources. Nowadays, LEDs are attracting attention as countermeasures against the novel coronavirus.

IN THE KNOW | Wireless Technology for IoT
Select Wireless Standards to Boost IoT Optimization
This article delves into wireless connectivity as defined by internet of things and how data are being transmitted from devices to the network. It also looks into wireless technologies that enable communications and which technology is optimal for a specific wireless design.
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he internet of things (IoT) is both known and unknown in the modern world. It is a common term for individuals in the tech industry and corporate world, but only seldom heard by the general populace although it’s part of their daily lives. IoT is the connectivity of physical objects, such as devices, vehicles, buildings, electronics, and networks, which allows them to interact, collect and exchange data. It applies to millions of different things, including updated traditional products previously not connected to the internet.

This article will take a look into the many ways these devices can communicate wirelessly.

zoomin
Despite Pandemic Snag, Bluetooth Devices Brace for Growth
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he Bluetooth Special Interest Group (SIG) has released its 2021 Bluetooth Market Update, noting the growth in the number of shipment units of Bluetooth devices has been pushed back by one year due to the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. Nonetheless, it predicted the annual global shipment of Bluetooth-enabled devices, which was 4 billion units in 2020, will reach 6 billion units by 2025.

Significant growth is forecasted to happen in some markets, including wearable devices and location information systems.

In 2020, almost all Bluetooth markets were affected by the global pandemic. However, some markets experienced growth. For example, the use of Bluetooth-enabled medical equipment and solutions increased in 2020 to provide better treatments to patients while minimizing close contact on the medical front. The release predicted that cases of the implementation of Bluetooth location information services will increase fivefold by 2025.

CORPORATE | CLOSE-UP

NTT DATA Taiwan Showcases Smart Solutions at Manufacturing Show

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tariff war on goods from mainland China as well as the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic have pushed Taiwanese companies in the mainland to look for alternative manufacturing options. These trends reflected the environment at Smart Manufacturing Taiwan 2021, in which trends of automation, virtualization and artificial intelligence (AI) integration drew attention of visitors.

Smart Manufacturing Taiwan was held from April 21 to 23 at the 4th floor of Nangang Exhibition Center Hall.

Exhibitor in Focus
NTT DATA Taiwan has been deeply involved in serving customers in various industries in Greater China and in assisting many companies to introduce SAP ERP or Enterprise Resource Planning software of SAP SE over the past 20 years. They also provide different levels of integration of Equipment Automation Program (EAP), Manufacturing Execution System (MES) and ERP from bottom to top since various industries are in different stages of digital transformation.

Dan Chiou portrait
Dan Chiou, Smart Manufacturing Development Center Sales Executive of NTT DATA Taiwan
Top | INTERVIEW
IRISO Head Sees EV Trends as Key to Fuel Growth
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n April 1, Hitoshi Suzuki assumed the role of President and Representative Director of IRISO Electronics Co., Ltd. The novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic created a dent on most industries since its onset last year and is expected to pose challenges towards the coming months.

In this interview with AEI, Suzuki gave an in-depth discussion of the company’s management strategies and goals for the future.

AEI: What are the goals you have in mind since you became president of the company?

Suzuki: Since joining the company in 1989, I have been engaged in technological development mainly in automotive electronics products. In addition, I have also worked in sales.

Hitoshi Suzuki headshot
Hitoshi Suzuki, President and Representative Director, IRISO Electronics Co., Ltd.
COMPANY | PROFILE
Yaskawa Electric Expands Application-Optimized Robots
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askawa Electric Corporation has been expanding application-optimized robots for industrial use in response to diverse market needs.

Since 1977 when the company shipped Japan’s first all-electric industrial robot, MOTOMAN-L10, cumulative shipment of MOTOMAN surpassed 500,000 units in Feb. 2021.

Founded in 1915 in northern Kyushu to manufacture and sell electrical machines for use in coal mines, Yaskawa Electric has promoted electrification and automation of industries for over 100 years. The company’s technology started with the in-house development of three-phase induction motors. The company has developed mechatronics as application technology of motors. At present, it possesses the highest levels of technologies in power conversion, motion control, and robot.

MANUFACTURING | FRONT
Meiko Electronics’ China Plants Put Quality at Forefront
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ith the two printed circuit board (PCB) plants in China at core, Meiko Electronics Co., Ltd. endeavors to add values to their products, focusing on PCBs for automotive electronics and smartphones. The company has been deploying stable production activities by pouring in heavy investments in automation and labor-saving measures to improve productivity.

Meiko Electronics’ Guangzhou Plant commenced operations in Dec. 1998 and stands on a lot of about 130,000sq.m, and has about 2,300 employees. As a plant specializing on PCBs for automobiles, it manufactures various automotive PCBs, including double-sided PCBs, multilayered PCBs, and build-up PCBs.

The Wuhan Plant, on the other hand, commenced operations in July 2005 on a lot of about 139,200sq.m. and has about 4,000 employees. The plant manufactures multiple product items for various applications, including smartphones made by Chinese manufacturers, internet of things (IoT) home electric appliances, such as smart speakers, automobiles, light-emitting diode (LED) displays, and communications modules. Production items include double-sized PCBs, multilayered PCBs, and build-up PCBs.

MANUFACTURING | FRONT
TOKIN Bolsters Plant Automation, Boosts Sensor Yield
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OKIN Corporation has been pursuing production activities in China with high added values. In recent years, TOKIN Electronics (Xiamen) Corporation, TOKIN’s production base in Xiamen, has substantially strengthened its production system for sensors, in addition to electromagnetic compatibility (EMC) products, which are the company’s main products. The company has been aggressively promoting automation and labor-saving measures to improve productivity. It has also been endeavoring to improve quality further in tandem with the increase in the ratio of products for automobiles.

Collaboration for Automation
Established in 1994, TOKIN Electronics (Xiamen) has been consistenly operating as a main production base for EMC-related business, producing ferrites, coils, and transformers. Over the past years, the company has been producing sensors, in which piezo elements are applied, on full scale. In recent years, the production ratio of sensors in the entire production of the plant has increased significantly.

Product | News
Semiconductors, ICs & Modules
Hosiden’s HRM1087-010010 BLE Module
Product image of Hosiden’s HRM1087-010010 BLE Module
Hosiden Corporation has developed HRM1087-010010 Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) multi-antenna module that enables directional detection using angle-of-arrival (AoA) released in Bluetooth 5.1. It is being tapped as an alternative technology for indoor measurement. The module incorporates six antennas, each of which receives radio waves and calculates AoA based on phase differences using an exclusive Hosiden algorithm. By eliminating erroneous detection due to multipath components and minimizing noise, the antenna array enables stable detection of the communicating party direction whether it is stationary or moving, covering a range of ±75° from the front side of the module. A Universal Asynchronous Receiver/Transceiver (UART) interface is included to control the module. Using this interface, Bluetooth connection and detection processes can be started or stopped from external host devices. Aside from indoor position measurements for monitoring, life log recording, warehouse management, the module can be used for electronic lock (hands-free keys), and smart key receivers.
Hosiden Corporation
www.hosiden.com
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